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Cedar Bayou, Texas, hits record-breaking rainfall, says National Weather Service

Harvey forecast
Harvey forecast: System will make third landfall Tuesday night 01:16

HOUSTON -- Cedar Bayou, Texas, has recorded 51.88 inches of rain from Harvey, marking a new continental U.S. record, the National Weather Service said.

The area, near Mount Belvieu, Texas, reached the record around 3:30 p.m. CDT and is a record for both Texas and the continental United States. It doesn't, however, pass the 52 inches from tropical cyclone Hiki in Kauai, Hawaii, in 1950 (before Hawaii became a state).

And Texas may not be done with the record books. "This total will likely climb higher as Harvey's rainfall continues," The Weather Channel notes.

Harvey has brought such unprecedented rainfall that the National Weather Service actually had to add two new colors to its maps to indicate the hardest-hit areas. 

"The tremendous rainfall in Texas is literally and figuratively off the map," a National Weather Service spokesman told CNET.  "In the original map, the top interval for the observed rainfall (marked dark purple) was for amounts of 15 inches and greater, with no upper limit. With Harvey, the updated map is more specific in showing the graphical depiction of rainfall intervals, which aren't often observed at such high levels."

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